Downtown Enhancement Grants
Downtown Eau Claire, Inc. (DECI) is launching a new program to encourage business owners in the Downtown areas to try something new in their business. The Downtown Enhancement Grant program seeks to support existing downtown businesses through a $2,000 semiannual grant to further enhance the downtown aesthetic and overall quality of goods, services, and the downtown experience.
The grant is available to any DECI-member business in an area of Downtown Eau Claire that has been in operation for 2 years or more. A fundraising effort earlier this year has funded the $2,000 semiannual grant through 2027. This program was made possible by the sponsorships of many long-time Downtown partner businesses and families. They include:
- Kerry Kincaid
- Kristen and Donn Dexter
- JB Systems
- Jill and Tom Barland
- Royal Credit Union
- Lissa and Tom Siedow
- Ruder Ware
- B~Framed Galleries
- U.S. Bank
- Charter Bank
DECI is now receiving applications for the first grant cycle of the Downtown Enhancement Grant program. To participate, businesses must submit an application and Enhancement Plan to DECI by December 1, 2017.
The first Grant will be awarded at the Downtown Eau Claire, Inc. Board of Directors meeting at 7:30am on Wednesday, January 3, 2018.
Applications can be found here. Competed applications will include an Enhancement Plan described on the application.
Enhancement Plans should incorporate at least one of DECI’s Investment Areas:
Creative Business Enhancement
Whether it’s putting on an addition to a retail space, commissioning a new product or service, or further enhancing another area of the business, we want to see owners push the envelope by updating their space or creating a one-of-a-kind experience for customers. Be creative!
Example: A yoga studio would like to expand their space to offer child care for customers and more classes.
Provides Community with Cultural Enrichment
In a larger city, the opportunities on a night out are endless. We want to encourage businesses to create one-of-a-kind events or experiences that are engaging. This could include support for a unique offering or a chef who receives training abroad to enrich the quality of product sold here at home. Applications for one-time events must articulate how the broader community will be enriched by this opportunity.
Example: Sending a chef to Italy to study – enriches our dining scene and drives demand for quality at other area restaurants.
Advances the Mission/Vision/Strategic Goals of Downtown Eau Claire
Downtown Eau Claire, Inc. (DECI) is a non-profit business organization dedicated to promoting the development of business, housing, cultural resources, and activities within downtown Eau Claire. This is a broad investment area that will change depending on our current strategic goals, attached here.
Example: A downtown business wants to expand by providing greater food options or a business wants to create more wayfinding signs to assist customers in parking.